1. a plant of the mint family, with downy leaves, purple-spotted white flowers, and a pungent smell attractive to cats.
  2. someone or something that is very attractive or appealing to a particular person or group.

Just looking at the picture above does strange things to me, fires off some chemical messengers in my brain, preparing me for a deeply satisfying experience. I can smell the pizza, I can even feel its warm, greasy weight in my hand, the texture of the bread like a comfort blanket. Pizza is my catnip, always has been, probably always will be. I love pizza. I am quite proud of the fact that I could demolish the above pizza, and then go for a second. I think ‘competitive eating’ (yes, its a thing) is wrong on many levels, morally, physically, nutritionally, but I am safe in the knowledge that if I was to enter a pizza eating competition I would certainly be a ranking athlete.

I haven’t eaten pizza for over 8 weeks since I have been on Fast800 but I probably think about it everyday. The student shop whici is just around the corner from my office does a fantastic pizza and throughout the end of last year and start of this when I was extremely busy at work I was eating a minimum of 3 per week, each with about 1000 calories (I remember eating 2 in one day). Not really surprising I was close on 20 stone at the start of May then. I have deliberately removed myself from situations where pizza would be, the temptation is just too much for me. After Galway United home games when we are all in the office, carrying out the general admin after a soccer game we get pizza delivered form one of our sponsors and I just can’t be there anymore – sorry lads. I thought I was doing well, thought I may have gotten on top of my addiction. And then it happened.

Tuesday evening, I have been in a meeting since 6pm and the clock has now ticked past 11pm, and everyone around the table is getting hungry. I ate 7 hours ago, but I am used to that now, I am half way through my nightly intermittent fast and I can cope. One of the guys has been on the phone and suddenly gets up from the table and walks out. In less than 5 minutes he is back, but he isn’t alone. I knew what he had in his hand before he opened the door, I could smell it. The neurons in my brain had already fired, a sense of excitement. Then there it was, or should I say there THEY were, pizzas are not solitary beasts, much better if they travel in pairs because 1 just isn’t ever enough. I wanted to reach over, grab a slice, satisfy an urge, this was pain. All the guys in the room know of my journey and I would never ask them NOT to order in pizza just because of my desire not to eat them, I am not that selfish. The guys joked with me, and in fairness supported me through this – really did need to call pizzas anonymous at this point, needed my happy place.

I got through it, just, but really was the biggest test I have had to face so far. If I can handle this then I know I can achieve my goals, for me to give up pizza is a sacrifice, but this is a sacrifice I am willing to make.

This morning I tested my blood sugar prior to breakfast and after a 15 hour fast, it was 4.4mmol/l – the danger level is 5.7mmol/l where I had been just 8 weeks ago. My blood sugar hasn’t been this low for many many years. 90 minutes after eating my blood sugar was 4.6mmol/l. Admittedly the meal was low in carbs (3g carbs, 29g fat and 22g protein) but still think that is a great result. Maybe, just maybe I am winning this battle.